Being a mom is the most challenging role a woman is ever going to take. Over the years--centuries even--a lot of innovators are finding ways to make a parent's like easier. Hence, the array of pregnancy and parenting products we have in the market today.
However, as homemakers, we also take into account budget and practicality--and with the time today, not all of us have bountiful resources to purchase every gadget we know to manage our everyday lives. That's why we thank the parenting gods that be for books and authors--fellow parents, really--that give use simple but genius solutions.
1. Save on buying bras during pregnancy. Quality bras are not anywhere cheap. Dornfest's tip: When you're pre-pregnant bra doesn't fit anymore, use your bikini top temporarily. Invest instead on a nursing bra.
2. Thaw breast milk twice as fast. Freeze breast milk into ice cubes, transfer into an air-tight bag, and then label with date before storing in the freezer. The size of the ice cubes should fit nicely into your baby's milk bottle. When it's time to feed, pop in the right amount of the breast milk cubes (no wastage!) in the feeding bottle and then float the bottle in a tub of warm water. The milk will thaw faster as more surface area is exposed to heat as opposed to one block of frozen breast milk.
3. Never forget to replenish diapers again. Using a colored rubber band to secure a rolled up spare baby onesie or outfit or the last diaper you have. When you finally use either of them, transfer the colored rubber band on your wrist. That should remind you that you need to replenish your diaper stash before heading home.
4. Quit waking up your tot when you open a door. If your toddler easily wakes up even at just the slightest sound of opening a door lock, loop a large, thick rubber band over one door knob, and then twisting it while securing the other end onto the other side. The twisted rubber band should keep the locking mechanism in place and muffle the clicking sound the door makes when you open or close it.
5. Teach your preschooler how to wear shoes. Use a large colorful sticker, cut it in half and place it on the inside heels of his shoes. The sticker should appear "whole" when the shoes are put side by side the right way. It's a nice visual guide when he's trying to make out which one is the left or right shoe before putting them on.
6. Turn lace-up shoes into slip-ons. Until your child is ready to learn and practice tying up his shoelaces, turn laced-up sneaks into slip-ons by undoing the lace and replacing them with thick elastics. Thread the elastic as you would the lace, and then knot the two ends together to secure. It will be "flexible" enough to let your child slip his feet into them and still holding them in place.
7. Give musical toys a new lease on life. Some electronic toys can be played even without batteries so let your kid do just that at first. When you feel that her interest on the toy is already waning or you need a "trick up your sleeve" to distract him or keep him occupied, use the batteries. The toy will have a renewed appeal, and your child will feel like he has a new toy!
8. Babyproofing on a budget When traveling with kids, you still have to make sure that at least the room you'll be spending the night is babyproofed, meaning no exposed outlets and such. Instead of bringing or buying outlet covers, use adhesive bandages. It works as well and is not as expensive.
9. Glow sticks as night lights While night lights are small, they still take up space in your baggage allowance when you travel. Instead of using those, pack disposable glow sticks (available in office supplies and toy stores) your child can wear if he's iffy about sleeping in an unfamiliar, dark, hotel or resort room. The nice thing about it is they take up less space and you can dispose of them after use.